Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Remarks of President-Elect Barack Obama-as prepared for delivery
Tuesday, November 4th, 2008
If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible; who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time; who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer.
It's the answer told by lines that stretched around schools and churches in numbers this nation has never seen; by people who waited three hours and four hours, many for the very first time in their lives, because they believed that this time must be different; that their voice could be that difference.
It's the answer spoken by young and old, rich and poor, Democrat and Republican, black, white, Hispanic, Asian, Native American, gay, straight, disabled and not disabled - Americans who sent a message to the world that we have never been a collection of Red States and Blue States: we are, and always will be, the United States of America.
It's the answer that led those who have been told for so long by so many to be cynical, and fearful, and doubtful of what we can achieve to put their hands on the arc of history and bend it once more toward the hope of a better day.
It's been a long time coming, but tonight, because of what we did on this day, in this election, at this defining moment, change has come to America.
I just received a very gracious call from Senator McCain. He fought long and hard in this campaign, and he's fought even longer and harder for the country he loves. He has endured sacrifices for America that most of us cannot begin to imagine, and we are better off for the service rendered by this brave and selfless leader. I congratulate him and Governor Palin for all they have achieved, and I look forward to working with them to renew this nation's promise in the months ahead.
I want to thank my partner in this journey, a man who campaigned from his heart and spoke for the men and women he grew up with on the streets of Scranton and rode with on that train home to Delaware, the Vice President-elect of the United States, Joe Biden.
I would not be standing here tonight without the unyielding support of my best friend for the last sixteen years, the rock of our family and the love of my life, our nation's next First Lady, Michelle Obama. Sasha and Malia, I love you both so much, and you have earned the new puppy that's coming with us to the White House. And while she's no longer with us, I know my grandmother is watching, along with the family that made me who I am. I miss them tonight, and know that my debt to them is beyond measure.
To my campaign manager David Plouffe, my chief strategist David Axelrod, and the best campaign team ever assembled in the history of politics - you made this happen, and I am forever grateful for what you've sacrificed to get it done.
But above all, I will never forget who this victory truly belongs to - it belongs to you.
I was never the likeliest candidate for this office. We didn't start with much money or many endorsements. Our campaign was not hatched in the halls of Washington - it began in the backyards of Des Moines and the living rooms of Concord and the front porches of Charleston.
It was built by working men and women who dug into what little savings they had to give five dollars and ten dollars and twenty dollars to this cause. It grew strength from the young people who rejected the myth of their generation's apathy; who left their homes and their families for jobs that offered little pay and less sleep; from the not-so-young people who braved the bitter cold and scorching heat to knock on the doors of perfect strangers; from the millions of Americans who volunteered, and organized, and proved that more than two centuries later, a government of the people, by the people and for the people has not perished from this Earth. This is your victory.
I know you didn't do this just to win an election and I know you didn't do it for me. You did it because you understand the enormity of the task that lies ahead. For even as we celebrate tonight, we know the challenges that tomorrow will bring are the greatest of our lifetime - two wars, a planet in peril, the worst financial crisis in a century. Even as we stand here tonight, we know there are brave Americans waking up in the deserts of Iraq and the mountains of Afghanistan to risk their lives for us. There are mothers and fathers who will lie awake after their children fall asleep and wonder how they'll make the mortgage, or pay their doctor's bills, or save enough for college. There is new energy to harness and new jobs to be created; new schools to build and threats to meet and alliances to repair.
The road ahead will be long. Our climb will be steep. We may not get there in one year or even one term, but America - I have never been more hopeful than I am tonight that we will get there. I promise you - we as a people will get there.
There will be setbacks and false starts. There are many who won't agree with every decision or policy I make as President, and we know that government can't solve every problem. But I will always be honest with you about the challenges we face. I will listen to you, especially when we disagree. And above all, I will ask you join in the work of remaking this nation the only way it's been done in America for two-hundred and twenty-one years - block by block, brick by brick, calloused hand by calloused hand.
What began twenty-one months ago in the depths of winter must not end on this autumn night. This victory alone is not the change we seek - it is only the chance for us to make that change. And that cannot happen if we go back to the way things were. It cannot happen without you.
So let us summon a new spirit of patriotism; of service and responsibility where each of us resolves to pitch in and work harder and look after not only ourselves, but each other. Let us remember that if this financial crisis taught us anything, it's that we cannot have a thriving Wall Street while Main Street suffers - in this country, we rise or fall as one nation; as one people.
Let us resist the temptation to fall back on the same partisanship and pettiness and immaturity that has poisoned our politics for so long. Let us remember that it was a man from this state who first carried the banner of the Republican Party to the White House - a party founded on the values of self-reliance, individual liberty, and national unity. Those are values we all share, and while the Democratic Party has won a great victory tonight, we do so with a measure of humility and determination to heal the divides that have held back our progress. As Lincoln said to a nation far more divided than ours, "We are not enemies, but friends...though passion may have strained it must not break our bonds of affection." And to those Americans whose support I have yet to earn - I may not have won your vote, but I hear your voices, I need your help, and I will be your President too.
And to all those watching tonight from beyond our shores, from parliaments and palaces to those who are huddled around radios in the forgotten corners of our world - our stories are singular, but our destiny is shared, and a new dawn of American leadership is at hand. To those who would tear this world down - we will defeat you. To those who seek peace and security - we support you. And to all those who have wondered if America's beacon still burns as bright - tonight we proved once more that the true strength of our nation comes not from our the might of our arms or the scale of our wealth, but from the enduring power of our ideals: democracy, liberty, opportunity, and unyielding hope.
For that is the true genius of America - that America can change. Our union can be perfected. And what we have already achieved gives us hope for what we can and must achieve tomorrow.
This election had many firsts and many stories that will be told for generations. But one that's on my mind tonight is about a woman who cast her ballot in Atlanta. She's a lot like the millions of others who stood in line to make their voice heard in this election except for one thing - Ann Nixon Cooper is 106 years old.
She was born just a generation past slavery; a time when there were no cars on the road or planes in the sky; when someone like her couldn't vote for two reasons - because she was a woman and because of the color of her skin.
And tonight, I think about all that she's seen throughout her century in America - the heartache and the hope; the struggle and the progress; the times we were told that we can't, and the people who pressed on with that American creed: Yes we can.
At a time when women's voices were silenced and their hopes dismissed, she lived to see them stand up and speak out and reach for the ballot. Yes we can.
When there was despair in the dust bowl and depression across the land, she saw a nation conquer fear itself with a New Deal, new jobs and a new sense of common purpose. Yes we can.
When the bombs fell on our harbor and tyranny threatened the world, she was there to witness a generation rise to greatness and a democracy was saved. Yes we can.
She was there for the buses in Montgomery, the hoses in Birmingham, a bridge in Selma, and a preacher from Atlanta who told a people that "We Shall Overcome." Yes we can.
A man touched down on the moon, a wall came down in Berlin, a world was connected by our own science and imagination. And this year, in this election, she touched her finger to a screen, and cast her vote, because after 106 years in America, through the best of times and the darkest of hours, she knows how America can change. Yes we can.
America, we have come so far. We have seen so much. But there is so much more to do. So tonight, let us ask ourselves - if our children should live to see the next century; if my daughters should be so lucky to live as long as Ann Nixon Cooper, what change will they see? What progress will we have made?
This is our chance to answer that call. This is our moment. This is our time - to put our people back to work and open doors of opportunity for our kids; to restore prosperity and promote the cause of peace; to reclaim the American Dream and reaffirm that fundamental truth - that out of many, we are one; that while we breathe, we hope, and where we are met with cynicism, and doubt, and those who tell us that we can't, we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up the spirit of a people:
Yes We Can. Thank you, God bless you, and may God Bless the United States of America.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
These FREAKING COOKIES ARE A FULL BODY "O" WAITING TO HAPPEN PEOPLE!
I swear I felt lightheaded, and had to hold on to my kitchen counter after the first bite for fear that my knees would buckle. These cookies seduce you so thoroughly that if they had a penis I would give them my butt cherry (if I hadn't already given it to someone else of course, but that is another story for another type of blog).
I must warn you though. This cookie is not for those of you who pussyfoot around chocolate. This cookie is for the hardcore chocolate slut like myself. If you are into cutesy, sweet cookies then run along honey. This shit right here is for the big girls. Now leave us to our business...
First and foremost I have no idea why Dorie is calling them cookies when they could very well be one of the best brownies I've ever had. So going forward I am calling them brownies; brownie pops actually because I put them on cute sticks to try to make up for the fact they are not the most aesthetically pleasing cookie I've ever seen. They have so much going on that I really didn't expect to like them. I'm a chocolate purist and I enjoy my chocolate desserts without all the bells and whistles of additional distractions such as chunks and nuts and fruit, but these bad boys sent me over the edge. I omitted the raisins (bleah), and added pecans and used mini M&M's and semi-sweet chocolate chips instead of white chocolate chips(white chocolate is such a cop out. Either you like chocolate or you don't. Technically white chocolate isn't even chocolate because there is no cocoa in it. Are you aware that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration doesn't consider white chocolate to be chocolate at all? Yeah white chocolate is for p*ssies) They were all kinds of sinful. Just thinking about them excites me. I'm done talking people because I have to run off and
If you want to have a really good night and are dying to make these cookies you can find the recipe @ Fool for Food. Tell Claudia I love her.
Be sure to check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see everyone else's orgasmic brownies.
P.S. Michelle of Bake-en selected Dimply Plum Cake for next weeks recipe. Needless to say don't come 'round these parts expecting that nastiness. Maybe I'll concoct something else...
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Rachel of Confessions of a Tangerine Tart chose Chocolate Malted Whopper Drops, and I valiantly attempted his weeks TWD recipe despite my dislike for whoppers and malt in general. I know, utter madness. Stop me before I hurt someone, or myself. I also used peanut butter whoppers since me and PB are BFF now. I think that was the wisest decision I made because the slight detection of PB in this cookie is the only reason I didn't vom.
After last weeks peanut butter breakthrough I felt bold and daring. I felt like the baking diva of yesteryear! Who knows? Maybe I would discover my favorite new cookie! MAYBE I WOULD BE ONE STEP CLOSER TO TAKING OVER THE WORLD WITH MY MAD BAKING SKILLZ PEOPLE! Unfortunately neither one of these phenomenons transpired. These cookies are weird, and chewy, and cake like. The malt flavor is very pronounced and sorta made me want to gag. Truth be told, that picture you see down there with the bite it...yeah, that one. I spit it out.
Straight out of oven these are really gross. The malt is like a crazy punch in the face. After they cool they are still gross, but you dont feel the sudden desperate urge to puke if you take a bite.
If you like malt flavored goodies you may like these (or if your taste buds are broken).
Be sure to check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see everyone else's yummy *barf* cookies.
You can find the recipe @ Confessions of a Tangerine Tart for all of the daring souls out there.
UPDATE: After reading several blogs that made these same cookies and hearing them ooohhh and aaahhhh that they tasted like brownies I grew perplexed. Are these people crazy? Are everyone's taste buds broken? With much despair I headed over to the host's blog and realized that I left out an ingredient (this is why you should only bake when you are coherent and not at 11:00pm when you are sleep walking in the kitchen). I left out the cocoa powder! I wonder if that is why the malt taste was so pronounced? Maybe if I added the cocoa powder I would have loved them? Anywho I hold firm to my opinion until I feel brave enough to make them again. Things that make you go hmmm....
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
This weeks recipe was chosen by Stefany from Proceed With Caution, and Stefany my dear you are a goddess for this pick. I briefly considered not making them (i am being measured for my straitjacket as we speak) due to the fact that I am not a huge peanut butter fan (an understatement considering just the smell makes me want to vomit; no i dont like chocolate peanut butter cups either), but thank the heavens for Operation Baking GALS! (i'm sending these to the troops) or I would never have attempted these.
Be sure to check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see everyone else's crack cookies.
You can find the recipe here @ Proceed With Caution.XOXO
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Monday, August 11, 2008
Words cannot adequately convey how amazing this past year has been. To be blessed with the love of the most amazing man I have ever known is a miracle in itself, and if I were to spend a million nights dreaming of the perfect man he would still fall short when compared to you. I love you completely and unconditionally. I love everything about you, and you are everything that I never knew existed in life and love. I love you for the person that I have become by simply having been privileged enough to know you. I love the way you love me for all that I am, and all that I am not. You love me in every way imaginable and your love far surpasses imagination. My husband; My best friend; My soul mate; My love...who when I ask if I look thinner after being on a diet 5 minutes always says "yes, but you were perfect before"; who tells me I'm beautiful when my hair is practically an afro and I have a full force breakout going on; who acts like getting up in the morning before 10 am is the most traumatizing experience in the world; who will let me fall asleep on his shoulder night after night even though his arm always falls asleep and gets a cramp; who will always pick up at least one box of mac n cheese from the supermarket for me even though there are 3 in the cabinet because he knows how much I love it; who genuinely cares about my family and never complains when we visit them even though they are the loudest, most dysfunctional people you could ever met; who when he hasn't shaven and has a 3 day old beard makes my heart pound so hard and quick that I will forget my name just by looking at him; who I could heat up a TV dinner for and he'll thank me and sing me praises as if I just served him a 4 course meal, and he isn't being sarcastic he is sincerely appreciative and grateful; who GOD FORBID doesn't wear socks to bed at night; who has a collection of 1362245984 t-shirts who's ages ranges from 1 month to 15 years old; My husband whose amazing green eyes pierce my soul and when he looks at me they are filled with such emotion that I almost forget to breathe; My husband, My best friend, My soul mate, How I adore you.
Happy 1 year anniversary baby, and thank you for the most incredible year of my life!
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
turns out to be a nightmare for your taste buds, and so goes the story of the black and white banana loaf chosen by Ashlee of A Year In The Kitchen. Now I have to be honest and say I may have played a minuscule role in the grossness of this recipe (ok fine, I really crapped it up), but some things in life should not be tampered with and that is a strict rule I adhere to for chocolate.
This recipe was destined for disaster, as soon as my tired ass attempted to make it half asleep at 12:00 AM. Don't judge me. I know you are thinking "well that is what happens when you procrastinate", but really I wasn't (this time). I've been running around like a mad man all week because I leave for vacation on Friday, and seriously haven't had a free moment of time (ok, ok so maybe I procrastinated in other areas which in turn affected my TWD timing, but whateva, whateva, you're not the boss of me).
The first step to this disaster is that I attempted to halve this recipe while delirious from sleep. That is never a good thing, as my being exhausted is equivalent to a drunk being passed out on the bathroom floor. Attempting anything coherent in this state is borderline suicidal. The halved recipe called for 1.5 oz of chocolate, but I was too tired to take out my kitchen scale so I eyeballed it. Yeah I know, shut up. Apparently my eyeballing skills aren't as accurate as I believed them to be, but we'll come back to that later.
The next part of this disaster is that in my tired stupor I forgot I was halving the recipe and plopped the entire amount of butter that a full recipe called for in the mixer, and started adding the remaining halved ingredients blind to the fact that they were drowning in butter. I prepared to assemble my black and white loaf, and taste both the regular banana bread batter as well as the chocolate banana bread batter. The traditional banana bread batter was fabulous! Even though the grease from the butter was pooled around the edges and in the middle. The chocolate banana batter on the other hand was all kinds of nasty. The banana flavor in the background of the chocolate nearly made me gag it was so gross. Chocolate should not be tampered with people. This was borderline sacrilege, but I persevered hoping it would be better after it was baked.
I marble the layers together and place my mini loaf pans in the oven, and after about 30 minutes I hear something akin to frying. I run to the kitchen to check on my loafs and realize that the loafs are actually frying in butter, and I suddenly come to the realization "crap I added the full stick of butter".
Fast forward to taking them out of the oven and cooling them. Under the cooling rack is a pool of grease that could have drowned a kitten. I carefully cut into the loaf and butter literally seeps out of the slice. The entire loaf is so saturated with butter that it is wet and dripping. *GAG*
I tentatively take a bite, and choke and cough. Ewww not only did a pool of butter trickle into my mouth, but the chocolate banana marble completely over powered the traditional banana loaf and it was NASTY. Once again I say CHOCOLATE SHOULD NOT BE TAMPERED WITH PEOPLE! I think the chocolate in this recipe ruined it. Or maybe it has to do with the fact that I may have added more chocolate than required, but still. Chocolate+banana=barf fest.
Also I made a discovery while making this loaf. I didnt have ripe bananas so I used gerber baby food bananas, and I think the traditional loaf would have been fabulous if it wasnt for the chocolate marble. I think i'm going to use that for my banana treats from now on.
Be sure to check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see everyone else's barf loafs.
You can find the recipe here @ A Year In The Kitchen.
Thursday, July 31, 2008
My first shipment was 4 dozen brownie buttons. Don't they look patriotic?!
The recipe I used was my favorite brownie recipe which can be found here
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
I've just come across this blog Operation Baking Gals on TWD and I wanted to share it with as many people as possible. I think it is such an incredible way to give back to those whose risk their lives for us each and every day. I can't wait to send out my first care package. Please pass this link along to anyone you think would like to help send a little bit of home made love to someone who needs it.
You see it isn't that I dont like fruit. In fact I LOVE fruit. Fresh fruit. Once it gets cooked/baked it gets all mushy and gross, and that is what I have issues with. I prefer my food not to have the consistency of something that someone already chewed up and spit out. So I knew if I flipped this recipe, and cooked the custard in the crust first rather than last, and then topped it with fresh strawberries it may be palatable to my delicate taste buds.
First of all Michelle, I have to say that I am currently eating humble pie (or summer fruit gallete if you will) because after I made this recipe I nearly pissed myself with excitement over how easy it was to put together and how amazing it tasted!
*stands up on dining room chair ala a tyson chicken commercial*
Michelle, because of you I attempted to make a crust (something which I would have never done because crust is for pie and pie is for fruit and well, you know the deal) and it was the most incredible crust I have ever had! Three cheers for Michelle and home made crust! Michelle you have single handedly changed my baking repertoire! My once bleak repetitious future is now filled with crusts and custard fillings topped with fresh fruits of all sorts! Michelle you are the bees knees. Thank you for waking up my dormant taste buds. Michelle I have a booty shake with your name on it;)
*falls off of dining room chair*
Now onto the changes that I made. The crust was perfect, but just because I can never leave well enough alone I added a bit more sugar and a little less salt, and about a 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon. How much you ask? Who knows. Perhaps a pinch or two more of one and less of the other. I spooned a small amount of strawberry preserves on the bottom of the crust and then topped with the graham crackers (even though there was no fruit juice for it to absorb). Then since the custard recipe seemed gross to me, and there was no way I could put sugar in an egg and call it custard I used my recipe for flan (caramel custard minus the caramel) and filled my little crusts with it. I cooked them until the flan no longer jiggled in the middle and let them cool and then refrigerated them for about an hour. Then I topped the tart with fresh strawberries and some powdered sugar. When I tell you that this simple dessert is so fabulous that it inspired thoughts of lust I'm not kidding. Make this people. I'm telling you. This is truly an amazing surprise.
Be sure to check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see everyone else's fruity surprises.
Thursday, July 24, 2008
DAMN YOU MASCARPONE CHEESE YOU TEASE!
I knew something was amiss because the batter looked odd, but I shrugged it off (because obviously a baking diva such as myself is exempt from rules regarding the timing of my mixer) and I continued to add the remaining ingredients blissfully unaware of whether or not this peculiar detail would influence the final outcome. By the time I added the last ingredient my batter sort of resembled chocolate milk with weird specs of cheese floating in it. The cheese didn't lovingly embrace the other ingredients the way I assumed it would. There was no orgy of love in my mixing bowl. (Again I ask, is this normal? Help me out people. What's the 411 on the mascarpone cheese?) Being the delisional optomist that I am I continued on my mission only to be disillusioned when I was finally able to taste it after a very long 4 hour wait.
I feel it may have the potential to be a phenomenal cheesecake if it were made with actual cream cheese as opposed to the mascarpone. I shaved my legs for nothing.
You and me are OVER mascarpone cheese!
I'm going to make this again with actual cream cheese and I'll update, and let you all know how it went.
For those of you who may be into a lighter chocolate cheesecake here is the recipe.
Chocolate Mascarpone Cheesecake
1 cup heavy cream
4 oz semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
8 oz mascarpone cheese
1/4 cup sugar
3 large eegs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
pinch o' salt
1tbsp dark rum, brandy or grand marnier (optional; I left it out)
boiling water as needed
position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 325F
in a saucepan, bring the cream to a simmer over medium heat. remove the pan from the heat before the cream starts to boil and add the chocolate, stirring constantly until mixture is smooth. set aside and let cool to room temperature.
in a large bowl, whisk together the mascarpone and sugar until smooth add the eggs one at a time, whisking well after each addition until the mixture is smooth. add the vanilla, salt, and rum (if using) and whisk to combine.
pout the cooled chocolate mixture into the mascarpone cheese mixture and whisk gently until smooth.
put eight 4oz custard cups, ramekins, or small oven proof coffee cups in an empty 9x13" baking pan. divide the chocolate-cheesecake mixture among the cups.
put the baking dish in the oven and then carefully pour boiling water into the pan, adding just enough water to reach halfway up the sides o the custard cups. cover with aluminum foil.
bake until the tops of the cheesecakes appear solid but jiggle slightly when shaken, 30-40 minutes. the perfect consistency is a little soft, but not liquid. the cheesecake pots will firm up as they cool. transfer the pots from the baking pan to a wire rack and let cool to room temperature. cover each pot with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or preferably overnight before serving. the cheesecake pots can be prepared up to 2 days before serving.
top each cheesecake pot with a scoop of ice cream and drizzle with chocolate and caramel sauces.
White chocolate lattice (because it is so cute and easy and I know you are dying to make some)
melt chocolate in pastry bag or sandwich bag
swirl design on wax paper
let harden (I put mine in the fridge)
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Anywho if you're into fruit and crap like that then you should check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see everyone else's fruit crap.
But if you want some real good shit then come back tomorrow. I am making mini chocolate cheesecakes tonight with chocolate covered oreos crust from my new mistress Sticky,Chewy,Messy,Gooey. Don't worry Dorie, my heart is still yours, but my mouth...my mouth may wander around from time to time;)
I'd shave my legs if I were you...I feel a mouth orgasm comin on...
Monday, July 21, 2008
and the lovely Dianne from Dianne's Dishes for awarding me with the yum yum award and making a moment like this possible...
Thats right ladies and gents, it is only a matter of time before they all fall victim to my charms.
My fabulosity is not a force to be reckoned with. Proceed with caution;)
And now a few blogs that I feel boast some serious food porn:
Joy the baker
My Sweet and Saucy
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
*adjusts fur coat and oversized shades*
I've been tagged by Susan of She's Becoming Doughmesstic!
Everyone knows that you are a nobody until you are tagged for a Meme. (Please wait until the end of my post for autographs.)
Who KNEW that someone found me so interesting and intoxicatingly off the hook that they were just DYING to know more about moi?! (I mean sure there is the slight possibility that they dont really care, and just needed to add a random blog to their list, but I prefer to believe I am just that fly)
1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on the blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself.
4. Tag six people at the end of your post.
5. Let each person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know when your entry is up.
And now without further adieu for all my fans/peeps/stalkers here is the 411 on your royal flyness:
1. I wore red shoes on my wedding (as seen by the picture in my blog header).
2. I met some of my best friends on the internet on theknot.com while planning my wedding.
3. Contrary to the opinion of million of women my wedding day was not the best day of my life. Don't get me wrong. It was absolutely fabulous and more amazing than anything I could have ever imagined, but the best day of my life...was the next day...when I woke up in the arms of my husband for the first time.
4. I have never in my life been drunk, and before my honeymoon (where I had a glass of white wine and literally passed out on the dinner table) I had never even tasted alcohol. Not ever.
5. I am addicted to my blackberry. Seriously. I can't function without it. I think I should seek therapy. If it takes me longer than 5 seconds to find it in my bag I immediately break out in a cold sweat and have to empty it out on the nearest surface.
6. I still get misty eyed when I talk about my cat who died 3 years ago. I MISS YOU POOKIE!
Ok enough about me. Here are some blogs that I feel are in the same realm of fabulosity that I am:
*disclaimer: I realize sometimes it is annoying when someone tags you for a Meme, but that is the price we pay for fame*
Now, Now, don't get all cranky. We have to appease our fans after all;)
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Holy Jesus, Mary and Joseph. The creaminess of this pudding is so velvety smooth you'll want coat your tongue in it and let it slowly dissolve just so you can savor every last second of this blissful experience. It is so ridiculously good that my eyes balls nearly popped right out of their sockets and rolled onto the floor. It was so rich and creamy that I nearly "O" because It tasted just like ice cream. ICE CREAM PEOPLE! The cure for everything from heart break to job loss. This stuff right here is the real deal.
Make sure you check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see everyone else's pudding!
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
The pastry is so fluffy and soft that it practically melts on your tongue and the filling...OOoohhhh the glorious filling. I could eat it by the spoonfuls. I want to bathe in it, and smooth it all over my body. If this filling is the devil then I'm definitely going to hell, but I'm sure I'll be in good company;)
Here is the Chocolate Dream Filling recipe:
Chocolate Pastry Cream
Bring the milk to a boil in a small saucepan. Meanwhile, in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisk the egg yolks together with the sugar, cornstarch and salt until thick and well blended. Still whisking, drizzle in about 1/4 cup of the hot milk-- this will temper, or warm, the yolks so they won't curdle. Whisking all the while, slowly pour in the remainder of the milk. Put the pan over medium heat and, whisking vigorously, constantly and thoroughly (making sure to get the edges of the pot), bring the mixture to a boil. Keep at a boil, still whisking, for 1 to 2 minutes, then remove the pan from the heat.Whisk in the melted chocolate. Let sit for 5 minutes, then whisk in the bits of butter, stirring until they are full incorporated and the pastry cream is smooth and silky. Scrape the cream into a bowl. You can press a piece of plastic wrap against the surface of the cream to create an airtight seal and refrigerate the pastry cream until cold or, if you want to cool it quickly--as I always do--put the bowl into a larger bowl filled with ice cubes and cold water, and stir the pastry cream occasionally until it is thoroughly chilled, about 20 minutes.
Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Sorry Marie of A Year in Oak Cottage and sorry Dorie (its not you, its me I swear) I am not spending this Tuesday with Dorie so there will be no "La Palette’s Strawberry Tart" from me. It is heart wrenching actually as I had grand plans for the tart, but my thighs and I have come to the conclusion that since I have to bake a cake this week for my fondant and gumpaste cake decorating class, I really shouldn't have two types of dessert in the house. They cheered when I told them that it meant one less dimple to look forward to.
Though I don't have a tart for you (well unless I count myself) I do have my cake final from course 1 of my cake decorating class (I'm currently taking the fondant and gumpaste class because course 2 didn't have enough students signed up to proceed. A travesty. I know). It came out lovely even though the roses got a little smooshed during transit.
It is amazing to me how much you can learn in four classes. I am truly on my way to becoming a cake decorating diva. You can all sing me praises and bow down to my authority on cake decorating at your leisure. It was so pretty when I walked through the door my husband exclaimed "babe you MADE that?!", and with my head held high I strolled to the kitchen and stated "YES! Isn't is beautiful!". The buttercream is my usual recipe, but the cake was fabulous. Now onto the cake...
The cake was "Beatty's chocolate cake" by Ina Garten, and I have to say this cake must really be extraordinary because as hard as I tried to ruin it (I was missing half of the ingredients) it was still phenomenal! I know what you are thinking. Why would she even attempt to make this cake if she were missing half of the ingredients? Well if you must know, I had to make a cake for my cake decorating final, and I wanted a chocolate cake and I refused to settle for yellow cake or go to the grocery store. I do not settle. I am the baking diva, and If I want chocolate cake I will have chocolate cake damn it! Seriously I was short an egg; I had the wrong chocolate (and not enough of the one I did have so I tossed in a chocolate pudding mix); I was out of vegetable oil so I used butter; I didn't use the coffee; and I used regular milk in place of butter milk and this cake was still amazing! Don't get me wrong. The texture was a little off, but the taste was excellent! So rich and chocolaty, and I am absolutely positive the next time that I make it with all of the ingredients it is going to be orgasmic! I am shaving my legs as we speak in anticipation of this mouth orgasm...
Make sure you check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see everyone else's tarts.
Beatty's Chocolate cake by Ina Garten
Butter, for greasing the pans
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pans
2 cups sugar
3/4 cups good cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup buttermilk, shaken
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup freshly brewed hot coffee
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter 2 (8-inch) round cake pans. Line with parchment paper, then butter and flour the pans.
Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until combined. In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs, and vanilla. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the wet ingredients to the dry. With mixer still on low, add the coffee and stir just to combine, scraping the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in the pans for 30 minutes, then turn them out onto a cooling rack and cool completely.
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
Now initially I didn't care for these brownies for several reasons (the main one being I'm a picky bitch). They are cake like, The tops are EXTREMELY cracked which makes them unappealing (to me, and lets face it my opinion is the only one that matters here), I didn't care for the cinnamon, and they take forever to bake. But they are one of those foods which are the enigmas of life in that they taste absolutely FABULOUS the next day. The cinnamon becomes an understated flavor and makes them interesting. The bittersweet chocolate is rich, and draws you in delicately. Long after they were gone I found myself craving them, and they are far from what I look for in a brownie. It's like my favorite bar treat had a snobby make over and I'm loving it.
Their addiction factor sort of sneaks up on you. Similar to when you get a subtle whiff of your husbands cologne and you are immediately filled with goose bumps and perky nipples, and you realize that this is one intense bar snack. Make these tonight...the anticipation of how amazing they will be tomorrow is worth it.
Make sure you check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see everyone else's treats.
I left out the rum soaked raisins (because raisins are gross and remind me of giant rat droppings), but I plan on adding rum soaked walnuts next time instead of the raisins to make them a little more grown up and exciting.
French Chocolate Brownies
makes 16 brownies
Adapted from Baking From My Home to Yours.
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
1/3 cup raisins, dark or golden
1 1/2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 tablespoons dark rum
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons; 6 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature and cut into 12 pieces
3 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup sugar
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 300°F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil, butter the foil, place the pan on a baking sheet, and set aside.
Whisk together the flour, salt and cinnamon, if you're using it.
Put the raisins in a small saucepan with the water, bring to a boil over medium heat and cook until the water almost evaporates. Add the rum, let it warm for about 30 seconds, turn off the heat, stand back and ignite the rum. Allow the flames to die down, and set the raisins aside until needed.
Put the chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Slowly and gently melt the chocolate, stirring occasionally. Remove the bowl from the saucepan and add the butter, stirring so that it melts. It's important that the chocolate and butter not get very hot. However, if the butter is not melting, you can put the bowl back over the still-hot water for a minute. If you've got a couple of little bits of unmelted butter, leave them—it's better to have a few bits than to overheat the whole. Set the chocolate aside for the moment.
Working with a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, beat the eggs and sugar until they are thick and pale, about 2 minutes. Lower the mixer speed and pour in the chocolate-butter, mixing only until it is incorporated—you'll have a thick, creamy batter. Add the dry ingredients and mix at low speed for about 30 seconds—the dry ingredients won't be completely incorporated and that's fine. Finish folding in the dry ingredients by hand with a rubber spatula, then fold in the raisins along with any liquid remaining in the pan.
Scrape the batter into the pan and bake 50 to 60 minutes, or until the top is dry and crackled and a knife inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Transfer the pan to a rack and allow the brownies to cool to warm or room temperature.
Carefully lift the brownies out of the pan, using the foil edges as handles, and transfer to a cutting board. With a long-bladed knife, cut the brownies into 16 squares, each roughly 2 inches on a side, taking care not to cut through the foil.
Serving: The brownies are good just warm or at room temperature; they're even fine cold. I like these with a little something on top or alongside—good go-alongs are whipped crème fraiche or whipped cream, ice cream or chocolate sauce or even all three!
Storing: Wrapped well, these can be kept at room temperature for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
Aren't they adorable! Can you believe I had to let them rise AGAIN for an hour and 45 minutes more?! Soooo annoying!
I had several issues with this recipe. The main one being this was more trouble than it was worth. If I had died and gone to heaven at the first bite of this creation I would have given up Cinnabon for life, but truth be told I will not be boycotting Cinnabon anytime soon. Hell, even Pillsbury is better and much less work. Maybe my life is too busy to enjoy this recipe, but I was more annoyed than anything that I had to sacrifice so much time slapping this dough down and it letting rise and slapping it down again only for my taste buds to be greeted with just OK cinnamon buns. Will I try this recipe again. Meh. Probably not, but at least I can say I'm no longer a yeast virgin. My yeast cherry was popped, but it kinda sucked. Almost exactly like having sex the first time.
Make sure you check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll to see everyone else's treats.
Pecan Honey Sticky Buns
Makes 15 buns
For the Pecan Honey Glaze:
1 cup (packed) light brown sugar; 1 stick (8 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces; 1/4 cup honey; 1-1/2 cups pecans (whole or pieces)
For the Cinnamon bun frosting:
Source: Good Eats n' Sweet Treats (Awesome blog!)
1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese, softened; 1/4 cup butter, softened; 1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar; 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract; 1/8 teaspoon salt
For the Filling:
1/4 cup sugar; 3 tablespoons (packed) light brown sugar; 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon; 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
For the Buns:
1/2 recipe dough for Golden Brioche loaves (see below), chilled and ready to shape (make the full recipe and cut the dough in half after refrigerating it overnight)
Generously butter a 9-x-13-inch baking pan (a Pyrex pan is perfect for this).
To make the pecan honey glaze: In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, bring the brown sugar, butter, and honey to a boil over medium-low heat, stirring frequently to dissolve the sugar. Pour the glaze into the buttered pan, evening it out as best you can by tilting the pan or spreading the glaze with a heatproof spatula. Sprinkle over the pecans.
To make the cinnamon bun frosting: Beat together cream cheese, 1/4 cup butter, confectioners' sugar, vanilla extract and salt.
To make the filling: Mix the sugars and cinnamon together in a bowl. If necessary, in another bowl, work the butter with a spatula until it is soft, smooth and spreadable.
To shape the buns: On a flour-dusted work surface, roll the chilled dough into a 16-inch square. Using your fingers or a pastry brush, spread the softened butter over the dough. Sprinkle the dough with the cinnamon sugar, leaving a 1-inch strip bare on the side farthest from you. Starting with the side nearest you, roll the dough into a cylinder, keeping the roll as tight as you can. (At this point, you can wrap the dough airtight and freeze it for up to 2 months . . . . Or, if you want to make just part of the recipe now, you can use as much of the dough as you'd like and freeze the remainder. Reduce the glaze recipe accordingly).
With a chef's knife, using a gentle sawing motion, trim just a tiny bit from the ends of the roll if they're very ragged or not well filled, then cut the log into 1-inch thick buns. (Because you trim the ragged ends of the dough, and you may have lost a little length in the rolling, you will get 15 buns, not 16.) Fit the buns into the pan cut side down, leaving some space between them.
Lightly cover the pan with a piece of wax paper and set the pan in a warm place until the buns have doubled in volume, about 1 hour and 45 minutes. The buns are properly risen when they are puffy, soft, doubled and, in all likelihood, touching one another.
Getting ready to bake: When the buns have almost fully risen , center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
(Obviously for cinnamon buns you wouldn't pour the glaze into the pan. You would just bake them, and frost them when they come out of the oven. Also I don't know if my oven runs hot or what, but 30 minutes was too long for me. Mine were done in about 15-20)
Remove the sheet of wax paper and put the pan on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat. Bake the sticky buns for about 30 minutes, or until they are puffed and gorgeously golden; the glaze will be bubbling away merrily. Pull the pan from the oven.
The sticky buns must be unmolded minutes after they come out of the oven. If you do not have a rimmed platter large enough to hold them, use a baking sheet lined with a silicone mate or buttered foil. Be careful - the glaze is super-hot and super-sticky.
Golden Brioche Dough (this recipe makes enough for two brioche loaves. If you divide the dough in half, you would use half for the sticky buns, and you can freeze the other half for a later date, or make a brioche loaf out of it!):
2 packets active dry yeast (each packet of yeast contains approx. 2 1/4 teaspoons); 1/3 cup just-warm-to-the-touch water; 1/3 cup just-warm-to-the-touch whole milk; 3 1/3 cups all-purpose flour; 2 teaspoons salt; 3 large eggs, at room temperature; 1/4 cup sugar; 3 sticks (12 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature but still slightly firm
What You'll Need for the Glaze (you would brush this on brioche loaves, but not on the sticky buns):
1 large egg; 1 tablespoon water
To Make The Brioche: Put the yeast, water and milk in the bowl of a stand mixer and, using a wooden spoon, stir until the yeast is dissolved. Add the flour and salt, and fit into the mixer with the dough hook, if you have one. Toss a kitchen towel over the mixer, covering the bowl as completely as you can-- this will help keep you, the counter and your kitchen floor from being showered in flour. Turn the mixer on and off a few short pulses, just to dampen the flour (yes, you can peek to see how you're doing), then remove the towel, increase the mixer speed to medium-low and mix for a minute or two, just until the flour is moistened. At this point, you'll have a fairly dry, shaggy mess.
Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula, set the mixer to low and add the eggs, followed by the sugar. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat for about 3 minutes, until the dough forms a ball. Reduce the speed to low and add the butter in 2-tablespoon-size chunks, beating until each piece is almost incorporated before adding the next. You'll have a dough that is very soft, almost like batter. Increase the speed to medium-high and continue to beat until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl, about 10 minutes.
Transfer the dough to a clean bowl (or wash out the mixer bowl and use it), cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature until nearly doubled in size, 40 to 60 minutes, depending upon the warmth of your room.
Deflate the dough by lifting it up around the edges and letting it fall with a slap to the bowl. Cover the bowl with the plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator. Slap the dough down in the bowl every 30 minutes until it stops rising, about 2 hours, then leave the uncovered dough in the refrigerator to chill overnight. (After this, you can proceed with the recipe to make the brioche loaves, or make the sticky buns instead, or freeze all or part of the dough for later use.)
The next day, butter and flour two 8 1/2-x-4 1/2-inch pans.
Pull the dough from the fridge and divide it into 2 equal pieces. Cut each piece of the dough into 4 equal pieces and roll each piece into a log about 3 1/2 inches long. Arrange 4 logs crosswise in the bottom of each pan. Put the pans on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat, cover the pans lightly with wax paper and leave the loaves at room temperature until the dough almost fills the pans, 1 to 2 hours. (Again, rising time with depend on how warm the room is.)
Getting Ready To Bake: Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
To Make the Glaze: Beat the egg with the water. Using a pastry brush, gently brush the tops of the loaves with the glaze.
Bake the loaves until they are well risen and deeply golden, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer the pans to racks to cool for 15 minutes, then run a knife around the sides of the pans and turn the loaves out onto the racks. Invert again and cool for at least 1 hour.